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A level english language

can anybody tell me what is actually studied in english language a level as all i know is that it's a lot different from gcse?
It might vary between exam boards, but for my specification we cover:

Individual variation, e.g. how a person constructs their identity through accent, dialect, prestige, etc.
Child language acquisition, e.g. how children acquire their spoken and written language, which involves looking at theorists and phonetics.
Variation over time, e.g. comparing a modern text with a text from 1500 AD (I think) onwards.
Coursework (20%), e.g. producing two texts such as short stories or journalism for different audiences.
Pre-released material is given by the exam boards in January, which I believe you have questions on in the exam.

I've just started my second year studying A-Level English Language so I haven't yet covered the last two points, but I hope this helps. Like I say it might differ between exam boards (this is Edexcel). You'll be able to find some more information online. A-level English Language is very different from GCSE (much better in my opinion); the content is entirely different and there's a lot of emphasis on grammar, but at the end of the day you're still analysing texts. Good luck in your decision.
Reply 2
Original post by Courtney19
It might vary between exam boards, but for my specification we cover:

Individual variation, e.g. how a person constructs their identity through accent, dialect, prestige, etc.
Child language acquisition, e.g. how children acquire their spoken and written language, which involves looking at theorists and phonetics.
Variation over time, e.g. comparing a modern text with a text from 1500 AD (I think) onwards.
Coursework (20%), e.g. producing two texts such as short stories or journalism for different audiences.
Pre-released material is given by the exam boards in January, which I believe you have questions on in the exam.

I've just started my second year studying A-Level English Language so I haven't yet covered the last two points, but I hope this helps. Like I say it might differ between exam boards (this is Edexcel). You'll be able to find some more information online. A-level English Language is very different from GCSE (much better in my opinion); the content is entirely different and there's a lot of emphasis on grammar, but at the end of the day you're still analysing texts. Good luck in your decision.


I did the AQA spec for my Eng.Lang A-level but it was pretty similar.

The first year was Child language acquisition and language & mode (written, spoken, electronic...) with coursework on representation in language (I did my essay on female characters in fairy tales and then produced a letter from a servant in the 1800s for the second part).

The second year was language variation (accents, dialect, gender, social class...) & change (comparing texts from across the past 600 years) and language discourse (debates and viewpoints around language) with a language investigation into variation or change /intervention for language discourse as coursework (I did the investigation into gender differences in conversation where I had to collect and analyse data and the intervention part was an agony aunt article).

You're definitely right about A-level being very different to GCSE. And there really is a huge emphasis on grammar and analysis.

What I really loved about doing English Language at A-level was the freedom we had in our coursework. The exam board gave you an overarching theme but, as long as you did something that theme covered, you could do anything you wanted - within reason.
Reply 3
Hi,
I know you'll have done this a few years ago now but I was wondering if you could help me out with the commentary for my coursework because I cant seem to find anyone else on earth that has actually done it!

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